Letter 99

Faitt Ill(1) Oct 8th 1891
Dear Brother and Sister (2)
I received your letter, was glad to hear from you. The money was all wright, I suppose you have herd from that before this time. I received a letter from Jim after I wrote to you, he sent me ten dolars so that leaves you and I fifteen apeace. I got one for fourty dolars, it is very nice and a very pretty one for the money, it is called the George G Granate, every one that sees it thinks it nice and a pretty shape. It is not so very large but will mark the grave just as well as a large one. I think you would be well pleased with it if you could see it. We could of done better if Mary hadent gon back on her word. She thought we would not do anything to it is the reason she promiced to give as much as any one of us. Lizzie said that her Ma ought to give as much as any one of us for she had all of her Pa property in her hands, all will to Mary her lifetime an she wont speak to Lizzies Husband when he speaks to her, they fell out about some land that he had rented, Mary has lots of temper. I expect she will be married before long if old Mr Mouser keeps coming two or three times a week much longer, if I could see you I could tell you so many little things that I cant wright but I had a nice visit with her and Lezzie both, they was just as kind an as good as they could be to me. I saw Jim Hope the week before I came home. He looks well an harty, he said that he had wrote you three letters and never got any answer. He said that he directed to Hanford, he new well enough that you didant get your mail thare, that was one of his yarns. I am satisfied that he never gave Mary nor Lizzie any money for if he had they would of told me. He wanted to know whare I sent my letters. I told him, look out for a letter. I got home the last day of Sept, found the folks all well. We think our baby (3) is very nice. I will send you one of her pictures as soon as the man finishes them an sends them to us. Crops are good here of all kinds, corn splendid. Fruit plenty. Peaches whare they had trees, churyes, black beries. Potatoes good, if we had some of your nice grapes, I often of them. Whare dos Utz live, in that house whare he did when we went one time an he was so long coming out. I would like to see you all and all of the relations, the best kind. I had rather come to California now than when I did for I feel like I was aquainted with so many thare. I expect the little children have grown so much that I would not know them. I expect Claud (4) is almost a yong man. I will send you the five dolars that I didand use. I would like to have you all to come to see us, love to you both and Claud an all the relation ever your Sister
Lizzie Twining (5)


Letter 100

(undated)(June 1895)

find it beneficial would move but I believe the oil & lemmon (6) will Cure you if you give it a fair trial to Clara (7) and John (8) . Lizzy and Wilford freckletons (9) boath got Married at the Same time last Sunday at the Mormon Church Lizzie got a fellow by the name of Hans Hasell and Wilford a German Girl named Emily Kropf. We have a Cozan here and She wants to go to California this fall She was one of the Garshwiler (10) girls her name now is Herald the Lawson family is living in the City Anna is Married to Bootwick and is Canada Hattie is Married and taken the Stage She is in the City. The old man died May Tompkins is married to a doctor and gone to Missouri on a wedding tour I cant think of any more to write to night I am alone and its 1' O Clock. I will say good night and Close for this time my Best Love to All
J S Watts


Letter 101

Faitt Ill Nov 12,1901
Dear Brother and Sister (11)
I expect you think that I have forgoten you all but I often think about you and vender what you and all the rest are doing. I have been away from home for about six weeks, just got home yesterday. I was at Lewistown, Mr Twining (12) brother that lived with Stewart folks was very sick, it was wors than sick, he was scratch on the back of his hand, he didnt pay much atention to it and in a few days it commenced paining him and blood poisen set in. He lived just too weeks, took him to Burlington, Iowa to be burried. When Stewart got back from Iowa he wanted me to stay with his Mother while he went to Kansas City to tend the great Stock show. He said it was splendead when he came home from thare, he wanted me to stay untill he went to Indiana to marrie him a wife so I stid till he brought her home on thursday and I left on Saturday. I was nat agoing to stay any longer. What are you all doing to put in the time. I expect you have plenty to do. We are haveing a very nice fall but dry, we havent had but very little rain, water is geting scarce in places, it was very dry all summer. It hurt the corn not a half crop that isant a good crop of any thing, thare is a few winter apples, what kind of crop did you have this year. I hope you have had a good one, it makes things so bad for people that rents for crops to be poor. How is Bettys (13) health now, I hope she well by this time, how is Utzes (14) folks geting along, did her brothers wife come back to Cal, how Joes (15) folks. How does John (16) and the school teachers get along by this time. I havent heard from Mo (17) yet, I guess they have give us up intirely. It has been some time since I heard from Lizzie for some time I am looking for one every day that is a letter. Are the boys with now the girls are in schol all the time, I supose they would be. Was Fleda (18) to see you this summer. Did you have a good fruit crop this year. I would like a bunch of your grapes. We are all well at presant, give my love to all the relations and friends, you must forgive me for not writing sooner I will try to do better next time. I will close hoping to hear from you soon, much love to you both


Letter 102

(Note written on the letter: A letter from “Cousin” Lizzie Twining to M. J. Hays Overstreet. Most likely tho the first of letter may have been lost. )

Mrs. M. M. Macpherson, 428 E. Pine St., Lodi, Calif

and I was at Mothers Grave it was all wright I was at Mitchels Burg (19) one Sunday they have a church thare now the place hasant improved very much after I came home I went to the crystal Springs and tented the Chautauqua it is a company that oues the grounds it is a beautiful place for the people to go to spen two weeks they have a large Tabnickel that can seat five Thousand people thirteen nice cottages and the ground then they have tent to rent and any one that wants to come and stay all the time there was one hundred and fifty tents on the ground. Grace (20) and I rented a tent staid all the time they had the best of music and speeches the most of the spakers was from other states the Govener of Tennasee and one from Georga one from Brooking NY I will quit for I can’t tell all of them I wish you both could have been here to of tented with us. both of the boys (21) have rentead their farms and gone to Canton (22) to live I am on mine yet and think I will stay thare the man that rents it lives in part of the house I never hear from Mo how is all of your childen tell me all about them when you wright is Claud (23) with now give my love to all the folks and to you both wright soon for I want to hear from you all we are all well
Lizzie Twining (24)


Letter 103

Canyon City, Colo., May 8th 1902
Mrs M. J. Overstreet
Armona, Kings County, Calif
My Dear Cousin Peggie (25) ,
Your letter of April llth came to me in due time. I was so glad to get it. You wrote me more news of my relatives than I had heard for a long time and we have enjoyed rereading your letter so much and I hope we will keep this correspondenced going now. I do feel so very lonely here, all by muself as to my Blood relations. I have my old man (26) and his hair is white. He is the biggest baby about me you ever saw. He says he intends to hand on to my apron strings always. He used to be afraid I would marry again if he died – but he says he is not afraid now of that - I am so old – no fellow would nave me. He is the same old Will - to talk & tease. But he has a great many friends every where. He could not bear for me to go on a trip and leave him here for two months so I gave it up and we will come together some time. He would enjoy being there with you and talking over old times so much - you know Will _ always loved to talk to my mother. Your letter found me sick with a spell of erysipelas (27) in my face and eyes. My eyes are very weak yet from it. Just the last few days I can go without the bandages. Weather here very warm, needing rain.
When you write about your family - four children and grandchildren it makes me heartsick to see all of you & them. We had a nice letter from Yada (28) last week. he was well when he wrote and is not coming home this year. He says he is saving his money. I hope he will, he never could save any here. Uncle Neely (29) thought Yada was very much like Connie Brown when Uncle visited us in Pueblo, the last time he was in Missouri, Uncle was on his way home & stayed over a couple of days. I am so sorry to hear of Connie's (30) death. I had heard so much of him and I was so anxious to see him and know him. I met Eugene once when he was young (31) . I wish I could come soon, I would love to see cousin Sarah (32) and I fear I wont.
Their is a Mr Chelsea Price Arnold (33) employed here at the Penitentiary. He is a son of Robert Arnold & Elvira Allen (34) of Callaway Co (35) , A nephew of William & Ped Arnold's, both of the last married sisters of Aunt Gen Scholl Berry. This C. P. Arnold is an own cousin of Peirrie Buchannan (36) , Cousin Bettie's husband. She was a Miss Bettie Noel (37) of Audrain County. I like them both very much, we have some good talks about the folks in Callaway. Price Arnold calls me his "Pa's old girl" because I used to dance with Robert Arnold when I was a kidd in Callaway (38) . Price hears from home every week and tells me of any news of any folks there. He and his wife are both very delicate.
Mother Hamilton (39) is still living and holds her strength very well. She is now eighty years old. She came out the first of April from Council Grove, Kansas to Pueblo (40) . Ella (41) lived there then. They are all at La Veta now. She told me of the folks around Westport and kansas City. She said Henry Harper (42)is getting quite feeble, he is about the age of Cousin Will 0 (43) isnt he? She did not know anything about Jimmie and Mollie Lobb (44) . Mollie Yager Tritte (45) live in Westport, had a good daughter & son (46) , only two children. Tell Pauline & Alice (47) to practice good on that new organ, when we come out to see them they can play for us. Cousin Will would be for bringing one of them home with us, we have never had a girl, had four boys, was a great disappointment to Will, our youngest would be 16 years old if living.
As soon as I get well I will have some photographs taken and send some to you. you cant imagine what a change there is in my looks. I wear glasses and am almost toothless and am as tall lying down as I am standing up. Write soon.
Ever your loving Cousin
Louisa Y. Hamilton (48)

Letter 104

(Note at top of letter: From, Sarah E. Caldwell, daughter of “Uncle” Nealy Yeager a beloved minister of early California)
Mrs Overstreet(49) Sept the 12 1902
Dear Cousin (50)
I received your most welcome letter found all well but babe. She has chicken pox but is around all the time Dick (51) had it first Mr and Mrs Keen is as well as usual but Mrs K. is feble all ways but we get along well. I am getting well am better all the time. Annie got the bunch (?) all wright. Mr and Mrs Kean are tring to get a place to rais Chickens and keep house too them selfs so I will not be over. This winter the black cow gives us all the milk and butter I am sorry we hardly milk the heifers at all. She has got over the swelling under her neck. Will try and sell her calf soon so they will have to milk her. You do not know how glad to have your letter for it does me so much good to know that you think of me. Annie is just as kind as she can be so we get along well. So do not worry about me. Had a letter from May they are all well. Do hope all is will be better soon do take good care of your self. I am glad that you still take the milk the creamry (52), it saves you so much work. We do not get any fruit but I get along very well. Of course I miss it very much but can do without it and a great many things that I thought I could not. Mr and Mrs K sends kind regards to you all, do hope you will keep well this and that we may meet again next summer do not worry about me the good Lord will take care of me and you and all that trust in him it may be better that I do not have things as I want them it teaches me to be humble and acept things as I find them. I think I have all read been beneficial by have to say things will be done and my faith is stronger than ever
Visit As often you can for it is such a comfort to me, the one green spot in my life. Had a letter from John (53)his letters are not very comforting if he could only look at things differently it would be for him hope we may have a good wet winter this year so we will be benefited but the good Lord no best. Glad to hear that Clara and John (54)could go off for a while it may do them good did you get your tasl hay cut before John went. Try and your milk as long as you can for it is too hard on you to take care of it. Cows (nows?) is scarce in this cannion. Remember me to Mrs Overstreet and the girls Claud C. (55) did want to come over to the meeting of the Synod (56)but will then to ----- my self the pleasure it meets the 7th of next October at 8 oclock at Selma (57)PM
Do hope you will get to go for you wanted to see Dr Farr but it will be so nice for you to go. I am glad that you have got your carpet do put it down this winter save up rags for me if I get a home I will covet them Annie Will and children send their love to you I remain your loving cousin
S. E. Caldwell (58)


Letter 105

Sept the 15 1902
Dear Cousin
I write to day having found a notis of your Father (59)death in our old family Bible. And not knowing that weather you had one or not so I will send it to you we never know what may happen to us as we are quinitine (60) for small pox (61)Dick had it first. We thought is Chicken pox (62)but the health offer came and _(illeg)____ it small pox that Baby has. She is wining around all the time and is never(?) playing the harmonie (63)in the yard and never been in bed at all. But we have to abide by his discision. So I will furniget this be sundie (?) it we are all well. They may stop the mail from here for awhile but write all the same. We are not uneasy about the sickness but don’t like to be shut up. I thought I would send this notis of your Fathers found it in our old familys bible to day Write first as often as you can love to all your loving
Sarah E. Caldwell

Letter 106

Matson (64) December the 28 1906
Mrs Wm Overstreet or any of the family
Dear Cousins (65)
Many years have passed Since I Saw any of Cousins Uptons (66) family or even heard of them Some way through Fanny Howell (67)Cousin Amazon daughter that was you was living at Lemore Cal I am trying to collect the names of all the Hays Families So that they may appear on the Confederate Roll in locating a monument to the pro-Confederates at Higginsville (68) Mo hope you will give me all the information you can there is 2 of Uncle Wm Hays (69) heirs at Oakland Cal so I am told but I don’t know which of them is there if you can find out will be obliged to you as one of the boys I think it was Wade was connected with the Confederate army some way.
Now Cousin Margaret this may not meet your way of bringing business but we are all growing old and It will be a great pleasure to our children to know that their parents were listed among the best People on Earth to know where they served during the war and in which army. Now please tell me how many children and their names you have and where they are. The Hays family are Scattered all over the US would be a very hard matter to find them all now Cousin write me and tell your husband (70) to write me too will be glad to hear from any and all of you any time.
Your Cousin
John B. Hays (71)
Box 31 Matson MO


Letter 107

Undated [page 3] (72)
If she wanted to write to Mrs. Lizzie McMurtry
(73), Bachelor, Calloway Co. Mo she culd get a list of the McM. Family and just how they ever married into the Hays. Family. Cousin Lizzies Daughter had it. I saw Cousin Ag give it to her. I was to copy the Hays Family and send to her and she hers in return. I have not as yet. Cousin Lizzies younges son name is Joe McMurtry (74), the wife’s fathers half brother Amizon Collins (75) lives at Sham Rock, Calloway Co. I send the letter do as you like about written. Mrs. Stanley told me that her sister Alice (76) has all of Uncle Neely Yagers (77) Papers and the Family tree. Sed she hurd her say she would hold on to them in hopes that some day she mite get some of the big Fortune that was to come to the Family but thought she would let us have it to see and return. Would you write to her or shal I write. Her adres. Is Mrs G. S. Smith, Alamo, Contra Costa Co., Calif maby I don’t spel the County rite it is near Walnut Creek. Mrs. Stanley is staying in Le Grand, tell me what to do when you rite. I wish she would give it to you her husband was Frank Yager (78). He is ded.
Well Fled
(79) is getin fater ever day says she is so glad when it comes time to eat. Papa (80)is real well and keeps very buisy our alfalfa is coming up nicely you wont hardly know the field when you come. We have 39 fruit trees out and lots of your Logen & Mamoth Berries out. We will soon have as much work as was on the other place. Beth (81)keep well and talks about Lew (82)is ever day. She brings him to me many times in the day sometimes to love & sometimes to spank for he makes so mutch noise. Well I am so sorry about Annie I know your feeling for you trusted her and I did not think she would go so far. But I thought she would drift back after she was married. Well look at the white girl that goes astray it always has been so and seem it cant be stoped and wont as long as the man is allowed to go free. You are tire of this so goodbye with lots of love and Kisses to my baby boy from Mother. You ar tired now I know. A card from Mother to you. Sure maby it was for A. (83) if you have one you may bring this one back. I have one and F. one other is yours


Letter 108

(Undated: Fall 1923)
Dear Cousin Bettie (84),
Your letter rec this morn so will ans. Right away and send the clipping. Yes I am Nancys (85)oldest girl Laura should have said so in the other letter but did not knw whether you all were still there or not since Maggies (86) husband died so thought if I wrote to Oneals (87)I could find out and Aunt Bettie was so anxious for you to have the piece. Will send you a piece of Aunt Bettie’s letter also. Father (88)is with me and he has read the piece a time or two he take the Confederate Veteran (89)off the time and it is about all he reads. Will look over the paper a little then gets one a them and read until his eyes give out. He was 85 the 8 of Aug. so you see he is not very young either. Well this will do for this time and if you ever come near the Academy (90) come and see me.
Loving Laura (Craghead) Hainline (91)


Letter 109

Sept. (1923)(Aunt Bettie's Letter)
Laura I am going back to the Civil War I have a clipping I cut from a paper last week writing up the Lone Jack battle (92) which Bro Dick and Ike (93)was in Cousin Up’s Division (94)is certainly a true story I want you to give it to Bettie or any of Cousin Up’s children some day it may be useful to them so I am sending the piece for you to give to one of them. I have read it three times wish I had of gotten at in Cousin Mag’s (95) lifetime She would have been like me it would have brought the past to memory tho Laura why cant we forget that horid past. Had a letter from Pearle and Claude both today. Claude invested in an oil well he wrote today they had just struck oil the day before prospect looked encouragingly tho he said you could not tell nothing about oil prospect today you would think you was rich tomorrow the bottom would fall out.
Now if Davis pulls through we are all right he is a second Woodrow Wilson (96) the Repub are sick they wanted Mcado they know would have easy sailing with him we all liked Mcado tho know if he was nominated he could never make the race and he killed him self he said he was for the man that most competent to fill the place. Said he had never voted a straight Democratic ticket we don’t want any half breeds especially at the head of us. See what Davis says I am a thourgh Democrat first last and always Now you get busy and don’t let the grass grow under your feet we all think we see victory if the Democrats all pull together. I feel that this my last Presidential Election do hope they give Republicans a genteel thrashing. So put on your thinking cap.

back to top© Marian Franklin - Email: Watts Hays Letters

Note: Spelling is the same as in the original letter. Punctuation has been added for clarity.


1891 - 1923

Letters 99- 109



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